Currently working at South Yorkshire PTE, I previously worked at West Yorkshire Combined Authority until 2016, simultaneously providing stakeholder, communications and public affairs support to Rail North Ltd. between 2013 and 2016.

Work versus fulfilment

I’d probably do much more if I didn’t have to work for a living…

Corporate memory

What happens to organisations when long-serving employees step down?

Twelve months (and one week) later…

A year of unemployment. How’s that working out now?

Inflexible travel for flexible workers

Why the travel industry hasn’t kept up with our working lives.

Would you like some feedback?

Well… no. Because it’s not me, it’s you.

Working smart versus working hard

It doesn’t always mean what you think it does.

The week that was

In the future we were supposed to have more free time. And yet…

The 30-Day Rule

How long should the recruitment process last?

Curriculum Vitae Markup Language

Something to take some of the effort out of applying for jobs.

Six months later…

I’ve been voluntarily redundant for half a year. How’s that going?

Station number three, open for business

The final rail station project I was working on before leaving WYCA is now open.

Recruitment: do as I advertise, not as I do

Communications professionals have to deliver on time. Other professionals… not so much, it seems.

The lost art of the rejection letter

Thoughts on the right, wrong and most-timely ways to let an applicant down.

Another new station

Two open – just the one to go now.

Phil Sayer

Yesterday we heard the sad news that Phil Sayer had died of cancer, at the still-young age of 62.

He was known as one of the voices of the Underground alongside his wife, Elinor Hamilton; but he was also the voice you heard at several rail stations across the country, which is how I met him. Metro (as was) had worked with Northern Rail (as was) to upgrade the information systems at stations in West Yorkshire, including new screens and announcements.

Phil – being Phil, and an old hand at such things by now – asked for a loudhailer, then walked up and down the platforms at Bradford Interchange doing the announcements live. The story – with photo – is still available on the Telegraph & Argus web site.

We were taking our first steps into making our own videos at Metro but I’d been doing post-match interviews with Leeds Carnegie Ladies for a while so, after everyone had left, I sat with Phil and asked him a few questions. As this was a test it never saw the light of day, it was just me holding the camera and asking the questions (and trying to ignore the train next to us as it departed). No directional microphone, no tripod, done straight to camera. One take. Professional. He’ll be missed.

Lessons learned

The end of a busy month concludes with the opening of Leeds Station Southern Entrance. So what have we learned?

A photographic morning

We’re very short on new / owned images of south Leeds for the A3 leaflet to go with the opening of the new Leeds Station Southern Entrance in January. So I’ve been out and about this morning. I don’t really do ‘arty’ but this would be a good Desktop photo…

Leeds Station Southern Entrance

View of the upper floor and roofline of Leeds Station Southern Entrance

A new rail station at last!

Apperley Bridge Rail Station is now open – guess who was on the first train to call?

The secret’s out

The joys of working on a launch when most of the people you need to talk to haven’t signed the confidentiality agreement!

What will the new rail franchises mean for the economy of the north?

A series of breakfast briefings I’ve been working on around the new Northern and TransPennine Express franchises.